An 11-hour agreement between the producers and the union representing 60,000 film and television workers has prevented a strike that threatened to cause widespread disruption in Hollywood.
The International Alliance of Theater Stage Employees, which includes camera operators, makeup artists, sound technicians and others, said negotiators agreed to a new three-year contract on Saturday, ahead of a Monday deadline that would have seen them leave the job.
“This is a Hollywood ending,” said Matthew Loeb, the union’s president, in an emailed statement. “Our members stood firm. They are tough and united. “
Workers have yet to vote to approve the deal, but the strike was called off with the tentative deal, avoiding a serious setback for an industry that had just returned to work after lengthy pandemic shutdowns.
Jarryd Gonzales, a spokesman for the Film and Television Producers Alliance, which represented studios and other entertainment companies in the negotiations, confirmed the deal to the Associated Press.
“Good for @IATSE for defending their position. And don’t forget that we have your back whenever you need us, ”comedian, actor and writer Patton Oswalt said on Twitter.
Another actor, comic, and writer, Yvette Nicole Brown, tweeted “#UnionStrong!” along with a link to a story informing the deal.
The effects of the strike would have been immediate, with teams not only in long-term productions, but also in daily series that include network talk shows and leaving their jobs.
The union represents cinematographers, camera operators, set designers, carpenters, hairdressers and makeup artists and many others.
Union members said previous contracts allowed their employers to force them to work excessive hours and deny them reasonable rest through meal breaks and enough time off between shifts.
Leaders said that the lowest-paid crafts received insurmountable wages and that streaming media such as Netflix, Apple and Amazon were allowed to work even harder for less money.
Details of the new contracts were not immediately disclosed.
The union reported on October 4 that its members had voted overwhelmingly to authorize a strike, sparking fears across the industry, but negotiations were immediately resumed between the union and the producers.
A deadline was set for Monday’s strike on Wednesday when talks stalled, but the union said subsequent negotiations were productive.
It would have been the first nationwide strike in the alliance’s 128-year history, and would have affected not only the Los Angeles and New York area, but also growing production hubs like Georgia, New Mexico and Colorado.
During the negotiations, many prominent names in entertainment came out in favor of the union’s demands, including Octavia Spencer, Mindy Kaling, and Jane Fonda. The Directors Guild of America also issued a statement of solidarity, signed by the likes of Steven Spielberg, Christopher Nolan, Barry Jenkins, Ron Howard and Ava DuVernay.
Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism